Monday, October 30, 2006


It got dark at about 4pm today. **sigh** This time of the year really makes me feel so low, bcos some 'days' dont actually feel like days, but more like nights. I mean, some 'days' I wake up and its dark outside, I go to work, spend the whole day indoors and when I leave at about 6pm it's still pitch dark outside.
I've lived in this country for about 11 years now and the weather is the one thing I have still not gotten used to. I can say I'm now used to the
eccentric behaviour and mannerisms of the British
sometimes strange cuisine (crisp sandwich, anyone? )
oh-so- stiff upper lip attitude of the British
DRY (or should I say 'arid') british sense of humour
and so much more. But this seasonal change, this time of the year when everything just seems to be slowing down and everyone seems to go into hibernation (maybe its bcos the days become shorter and the nights longer?) I still cant get my head around and honestly speaking, I don't think I ever will.
There was an article in the Metro today on SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) , a condition that affects about half a million Britons. The theory behind this affliction is that lack of sunlight in the winter months destabilises chemical levels in the brain and this results in decreased levels of the 'feel-good' hormones and increased levels of the hormone that depresses mood. Sufferers experience lethargy, depression, irritation, disturbed sleep patterns and tend to comfort eat and gain weight during this period, but all of these symptoms are completely alleviated during the summer. The mainstay of treatment is phototherapy (intensive light therapy) in which special light boxes are used to mimic natural sunlight , giving sufferers the illusion that they are in a brighter climate.
Reading this article reminded me of a very interesting post I came across on a blog a while back. (See HERE) Basically her take on the reason why such disorders, including depression are not common amongst Africans,(and by Africans, I'm referring specifically to Nigerians) is that trying to cope with the daily struggles of life - food, shelter,education, employment, security, etc - leaves very little room for us to get depressed. I totally agree with her viewpoint because it makes sense; even more sense than what I was thought about the pathophysiology of depression at University. (Dont get me wrong, I'm not trying to trivialise this condition as I know it actually exists, I'm just trying to decipher why it occurs in the first place.)
And of course, having the fear of God and the assurance that we are all fearfully and wonderfully made and have been put on this earth for a purpose is another reason. If we as humans focus on this irefutable fact then would there actually be a place in our lives for depression?
I've got a lot to be thankful for, why should I be depressed? I'm alive, healthy and so are my loved ones. A couple of months of no sunshine will not be a reason for me to wallow in despair or be SAD. Only another seven or so months to go until summer comes around again.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


The British are renowned for being one of the (if not THE) most polite group of people in the world. But I can't help but laugh to myself and wonder, sometimes don't they take it a bit too far? The over- use of the words 'please' 'excuse me' 'thank you' and 'sorry' sometimes tend to be a bit ridiculous, especially the latter two.
Let me illustrate with the exchange played out below, which I'm sure most of us have been privy to during our shopping trips to Tesco, Asda, etc:

shopper brings his/her shopping to the checkout and proceeds to unload it onto the conveyor belt

cashier: thank you (smiles or maybe not?)

shopper: thanks

cashier scans items

cashier: that will be £25, thank you.

shopper: (proferring cash/card) thank you

cashier: (scans card/rings in cash into till) can you enter your pin number, please. thanks
OR (if paying by cash) that's your £5 change. thanks.

shopper: thank you. Bye

cashier: thank you. bye

lol. Uneccessary or what? I even find myself doing it sometimes; I think its been programmed into my system as a result of being around British people. Like, just now, a lady knocked at my office door and as I let her in, she thanks me and I thank her in reply. WHAAATTTT!!! What was the point in saying that? 'thank you for thanking me for opening the door for you?' Maybe I've lived here too long.
Another example (and most of us that travel on the tube/trains/buses will have experienced this) is when you're on a packed tube/bus and someone mistakenly bumps into you/sneezes all over you/steps on your foot, etc and they quickly apologise and you say 'its alright!' Er, no it's not!
I might as well say, 'Its alright.Spray me with your germs all you want, its fine by me. I dont mind.' Why not just smile at them and leave it at that?
Or when someone bumps into you and says 'sorry' and you say 'sorry' as well, just to ease the tension, even though the other person is clearly at fault (ok, maybe this just happens with me, then).
Yup, I've definitely been here tooooooooo long!!

Thursday, October 19, 2006


These people at my work never cease to amaze me! Imagine my immense amusement when I went into the ladies today and found yet another notice had been put up on the inside of the toilet door. It read:

I actually burst out of the ladies laughing , much to the surprise of two of my colleagues, who were probably wondering if I'd finally lost it! I think this is a classic example of how prim and proper the British can be... I mean who uses the word 'motion' in their everyday vocabulary?!! But what is NOT so funny is the fact that this is probably the 4th notice that has been put up in the ladies, concerning it's state of hygeine or lack, thereof. Other notices have included the following:
HONESTLY!! You would think that grown, mature women would be decent enough to keep the toilet clean after using it; even if the toilets in their homes aren't, at least consider other people at work and make an effort, if anything to avoid embarrasing themselves! I wonder if the men's toilet has so many such notices. (not that I'm going to go out of my way to find out,oh! lol)
On the other hand, at least it ensures that we are never short of reading material when we go into the ladies! hehehe....

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


I got tagged by Vera. Thanks girl; I've got a bit of blogger's block so at least I have something to blog about, until I get some new ideas. So here goes...

  1. Customer services assistant at Burger King and KFC (glorified waitress)
  2. Medical laboratory assistant
  3. Telemarketing executive (for like 30 minutes!)
  4. Shop assistant at a boutique
  1. Presenter on a holiday t.v show
  2. After watching 'the Devil wears Prada', I wouldn't mind working as a fashion editor's assistant for Vogue. That way I get access to all the clothes, but without the responsibility that comes with being the actual editor. lol
  3. Shoe designer
  4. brain surgeon (without having to spend 20 years in med school)
Ok, I couldn't think of any fictional jobs I'd wish I had, except locking people up for crimes against fashion (fashion police) so I've listed actual jobs I wish I had.

  1. Bridget Jones's diary
  2. Shrek (I&II)
  3. Coming to America
  4. You got served
  1. Madrid, Spain
  2. London, England
  3. Port-Harcourt, Nigeria
  4. Spinkhill, Derbyshire (actually its more like a village than a city)
  1. Scrubs (love it, love it,love it!!!!!)
  2. America's next top model (for the drama)
  3. Grey's anatomy (when I actually catch it on t.v!)
  4. House (same as above)
  1. Spain
  2. Portugal
  3. America (specifically Chicago, New York, Maryland)
  4. Aberdeen
  1. Blogspot (naturally)
  2. Google
  3. NWLH intranet (work-related)
  4. hotmail
  1. Spag bol
  2. cheese and bacon toastie
  3. chips, chips, chips!
  4. thai green curry
  1. Frog legs (never again!)
  2. Lobster , shrimps, prawns ... in fact most seafood
  3. yam porridge
  4. Onugbu (bitterleaf) soup
  1. Jollof rice from Tinubu square (a naija restaurant near my house)
  2. Chinese
  3. Chicken caeser wrap and chips a la Chiquito's
  4. Damn! all this talk of food is making me hungry!!!!
  1. loads of shoes
  2. loads of cd's
  3. loads of handbags
  4. loads of clothes
  5. Its a wonder I have room for anything else!
  1. sky t.v (I hate having to come down to the living room; its always cold in there!)
  2. more shoes
  3. more clothes
  4. more handbags
  5. I'm working on numbers 2, 3 and 4
  1. my glasses
  2. pj's
  3. a sweater
  4. a navel ring (does that count?)
  1. Naija
  2. Cuba
  3. The Algarves
  4. Anywhere but here!
  1. Tyra Banks. I think she seems like a down to earth gal.
  2. George Bush (YEAH RIGHT!)
  3. That fine doc that I used to work with. Forget dinner, I could drown in those lovely brown eyes.....
  4. All the bloggers on my faves list. Can you imagine how MAD & FUN that would be!!!
  1. I wish I could snap my fingers and a plate of Tinubu square jollof rice would appear in front of me.
  2. Scrubs is sooooo funny!!!!!! (its on t.v at the moment)
  3. Aaargghhhhh!!! I wish this darn tooth didnt hurt so much!
  4. Does my bum look big in this????
  1. music
  2. anything sweet
  3. sleeping
  4. kissing (not that I go around kissing every Tom, Dick and Harry!)
  1. Nkem
  2. Opium
  3. Rose-tinted glasses
  4. Engineer Ayo
  5. Anybody else reading this who hasn't been tagged yet.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006


I wouldn't say that I'm a sucker for love songs, but I can (proudly) declare that I know the lyrics to at least 90% of the songs that are played on the likes of Heart fm or Magic fm. (hey what can I say, I have a very retentive memory!)
I love all the golden oldies, especially songs from the motown era; Lionel Ritchie, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, etc... they are credited with singing some of the most beautiful songs ever. I've got an eclectic taste and also love songs by Abba, Chicago, Phil Collins; the list is endless.
Now whilst I may know the words to so many songs, I must admit that I dont necessarily pay attention to their lyrics, rather its the melody, the tune and harmonies of the song that captivate me . Which leads me to the point of this post.
I recently bought the 'Chicago's greatest hits' album. For those of you that dont remember, some of their popular hits include 'hard for me to say I'm sorry' , 'If you leave me now' and 'hard habit to break'. So I was playing the album in my car last week , listening to the first track (hard habit to break) and my (somewhat crazy) friend suddenly remarks, 'you know this song sounds like a stalker anthem!' According to her, a stalker anthem is a song that sounds so desperate that it wouldnt be far off from what a stalker would sing to the object of his/her affection. The lyrics are filled with so much longing that it almost borders on obsession with the subject in question. Actually listening to the lyrics of the above song, the chorus goes like this:

Now being without you takes a lot of getting used to
Should learn to live with it but I don't want to
Living without you it's all a big mistake
Instead of getting easier It's the hardest thing to take
I'm addicted to ya babe. You're a hard habit to break

When I really paid attention to the words of the song, I grudgingly realised that she was right; it does sound a bit stalker-ish. So, with her help, I've compiled a list of my top ten stalker anthems. Feel free to add to this as I'm sure my list is not exhaustive.

10. End of the road - Boys II Men. Some of you are going to cuss me out on this one, but a part of the chorus does sound a tad desperate, hence the reason it's number 10 on my list:

Although we've come to the End Of The Road; still I can't let you go.It's unnatural, you belong to me, I belong to you

9. Can't stop loving you - Phil Collins.

Cause I can’t stop loving you. No I can’t stop loving you. No I won’t stop loving you .Why should I? (Na by force?)

8. Damned - Bon Jovi. The chorus of this song sounds almost angry!

Damned if you love me. Damned if you don't. It's getting harder holding on, but I can't let you go. Damned if you don't need me. Damned if you do. God, I wish it wasn't me standin' in these shoes. Damned, damned ...

7. Hard habit to break - Chicago (see lyrics above)

6. I dont wanna live without your love - Chicago

I don't wanna live without your love, I don't wanna face the night alone.

I could never make it through my life if I had to make it on my own.

I don't wanna love nobody else, I don't wanna find somebody new.

I don't wanna live without your love, I just wanna live my life with you.

5. I dont want to - Toni Braxton . Now the whole song , to me, has stalker undertones, but the bridge and the chorus particularly stand out:

And I don't want to sing another love song babe. I don't want to hum another melody

I don't want to live my life without you babe yeah .It's driving me crazy (crazy)

I don't wanna laugh, I don't wanna play,I don't wanna talk, I have nothing to say

I don't want to tour, forget this show and how can I go on now that you are gone

4. Breathe again - Toni Braxton

If I never feel you in my arms again .If I never feel your tender kiss again

If I never hear I love you now and then. Will I never make love to you once again

Please understand if love ends then I promise you, I promise you

that, that I shall never breathe again. Breathe again breathe again.

That I shall never breathe again. Breathe again

And this line from the 3rd verse does have the potential to send chills down one's spine (if it wasn't already from a song we all know and love):

And I can't get you outta my mind. God knows how hard I tried

And if you walk right out my life God knows I'd surely die!!

3. I'm gonna make you love me - Diana Ross and Smokey Robinson. I really, really love this song, but the chorus does make me laugh:

I'm gonna get you, I'm gonna get you. Look out boy cos I'm gonna get you!

I'm gonna make you love me. Oh yes I will, yes I will...

2. Without you - Mariah Carey. A truly beautiful song, I think the song speaks for itself.

I can't live If living is without you. I can't live I can't give any more

And the ultimate, number one stalker anthem goes to :

Every breath you take - Sting

Every breath you take. Every move you make.

Every bond you break, every step you take I'll be watching you

O can't you see You belong to me. How my poor heart aches with every step you take

Every move you make. Every vow you break

Every smile you fake, every claim you stake I'll be watching you!!!

So there you have it. What I consider to be the top ten 'stalker anthems' in my collection. But never mind; I still love them , regardless.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

AND THE AWARD FOR 'trashiest talkshow ever' GOES TO....

British daytime television is absolutely rubbish! I've had the week off work and because my sister is at home too I've been forced to watch all the crap talkshows that plague most of the tv channels. From Trisha to Ricki Lake (I didnt know she was still alive!) its all just a crap-fest of tasteless, tacky daytime viewing!
But one talkshow that really takes the biscuit is the 'Jeremy Kyle' show. Where do I start on this one? Is it the idiotic, cliched topics of discussion - most are along the lines of :
'Mum, stop sleeping with my boyfriends!'
'I had to sell my home to fund my teenage son's drug habit'
'my husband loves to wear my underwear'
The list goes on and on and just when I think it cant get any worse, good ol' Jeremy comes up with yet another even more ridiculous story in an attempt to fascinate (or should I say repulse?). Pardon me, but I thought these talkshow hosts were supposed to be impartial and give the guests a chance to narrate their side of the story? Oh, but not Jeremy; I think he is one the most judgemental, patronising, condescending human beings ever to grace television! Its almost comical the way he waltzes around the stage, acting all high and mighty, whilst at the same time taking every opportunity he can to fling insults at the guest if he/she says something that he doesn't aggree with.
For example I was watching (under diuress, of course) the show yesterday, with the topic being, ' I have 6 different kids by 6 different men and dont know who my 7th baby-daddy is' (or something like that) Anyways the woman in question gets into an arguement with 2 of the baby-fathers and in the midst of this Jeremy asks, 'so why did you sleep with her then?' to which baby-daddy no.1 replies, 'I dont know, I was drunk...' BIG MISTAKE!!
Jeremy, who hardly gives the audience a chance to voice their criticisms, responded by blasting the three of them with,' YOU IMMORAL HUMAN BEINGS! HAVE YOU NEVER HEARD OF CONTRACEPTION?! After he finished his tirade he then proceeded to bark at baby-daddy no.2 ,'you are a good-for-nothing so and so. Get off my stage!'
Mind you, if you're the sort of character who will appear on a show like that, airing your dirty laundry for all the world to see, I guess you deserve whatever is coming to you.
As for the audience, its never really clear exactly who they are supporting or who they are against. One minute they're cheering , the next they're booing at the same person. It's like the director is standing behind the camera with cue cards, prompting them when to cheer or applaud or boo. And I thought Jerry Springer was trashy!
*sigh* Honestly I need to use my free time more productively. From now on I will only watch the teleshopping channels on my week off. But seriously you have been warned! If you watch the Jeremy Kyle show, you watch at your own peril!!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006


I need help from all you blogger whizkids out there. My last post keeps showing that I have zero comments, but I have like 6. (not that I'm counting ,but its quite discouraging when I log in and see the number '0' in front of comments. lol)
Also I tried adding in 3 more links to my link list, but they're not coming up.I've tried re-publishing my settings page, but to no avail. Being the technophobe that I am, I'm scared of trying to fiddle with too much on , lest I completely scramble everything up.
Any pointers? and please could it be as simplified as possible, as in 'blog trouble-shooting for dummies' style, bcos knowing myself I'll probably get confused just trying to decipher all that technical mumbo-jumbo.
Many thanks!

Saturday, October 07, 2006


I know that you guys are eagerly awaiting the findings of my detective work regarding MOAM and her suspicious interest in little ol' me. (Chei, una too like gist, oh!! lol). But anyway sha, I will deliver as promised.
So when I got home that evening I called my friend, Chioma, whose sister is apparently friend's with MOAM's daughter, Stella and I narrated all that happened to her. She admitted that she does know Stella, albeit not very well as she is more of her sister's mate, and she has only met her mother a couple of times , so doesnt really know much about her.

me: so did you or your sister tell her about me or mention me to her at all? why did she come looking for me? how does she know where I work?

Chioma: No I didn't. I dont even know the woman that well and I dont recall her even coming to our house recently.

me: ask your sister, then. she must have said something to her friend about me. I dont know, maybe Stella thinks she knows me from somewhere?
I guess I was probably clutching at straws here, but I know my friend wouldnt lie to me or try to hide anything from me, so the fact that she was equally as baffled made the matter even more intriguing.

Anyway we rack our brains for a few more minutes and then suddenly Chioma says, 'hang on a minute; I've got to ask my sister something.' I then hear her shout to her sister in the background , ' Oby, does your friend Stella have a brother?' and her sister shouts back 'YES!'

My people, so there you have it! It turns out, from further questioning, that MOAM has a son, in his 30's , who may or may not be single (this fact is not fully known by either Chioma or her sister) and it appears that she had seen me at my work place one day, liked the way I looked (I guess) and had taken it upon herself to try and hook me up with her son. I dont know where she made her enquiries about me or how she found out about me, but coincidentaly, by a weird twist of fate, it also now turned out that she knows my friend.
BUT, as I'm typing this I'm actually thinking to myself, 'this is too much of a co-incidence; something doesn't quite add up here. Even if this woman had spotted me randomly what are the chances that she would mention me to her daughter and that her daughter just happens to have a friend whose sister knows me????? SERIOUSLY, WHAT ARE THE CHANCES OF THAT HAPPENING? Hmmm....... ok, now I can definitely smell a rat, but as I've got no more leads to go on, I'm just going to have to accept the story as it stands, and so will you guys, until I can prove otherwise.
Whether or not her son knows what his mother and sister were up to, I dont know; I sure hope he was kept in the dark about all this, bcos otherwise how sad and desperate would that be? But you've just got to laugh... I mean didn't know that in this day and age things like this still happened; I thought these things were done on the sly, with a little more under-G, lol. I wonder what MOAM was planning to do - introduce me to her son and say 'hey,son, look at the nice girl I found for you. You wont believe all the effort I went through to get her!'
Needless to say I didn't call MOAM or her daughter. My friend, Chioma, thinks I should, at least to try and find out what the deal really is. I mentioned this to another friend of mine and her reply was, 'WHAT? ARE YOU MAD! DONT EVEN DARE! DO YOU WANT THEM TO THINK YOU ARE DESPERATE TO BE HOOKED UP TOO? Or something along those lines.
I guess now that my curiousity has been aroused I am intrigued to know more, so if MOAM does appear on the scene again.....who knows what I might do?

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


Can someone please explain to me what is the purpose of that 'word verification' thing that comes up when you want to leave a comment on some blogs?
I find it very pointless and annoying; I just want to write my comment and post it one time; I really dont see the point in having to type out some random letters before I can do that. Abi dem blogspot people just want to test wether I can actually read and write? If couldnt , I wont be able to use a computer, let alone be blogging in the first place?
Abeg, can someone help me satisfy my curiosity, bcos me, I no understand!


The story I'm about to recount actually happpened to me a couple of months ago. I was at work one fine, uneventful day when this lady comes up to my department asking for me; normally I wouldn't have batted an eyelid, except that she actually asked for me by my Nigerian name, a name very few people ( except those closest to me) call me. So I approached her, greeted her and asked her how I could be of assistance, all the time wondering who she was and how she knew my name. The dialogue was as follows:

MOAM: Ngozi* nwa m, kedu? (Ngozi my child, how are you?)

me: I'm fine ma. I'm sorry... but do I know you? (thinking that maybe she was some long lost aunty or a friend of my parents, someone from our hometown, etc) NOTE: this question was asked in the most polite, respectful way possible.

MOAM: (ignoring the question) You're Ngozi, arent you? its nice to see you; you're looking well.

me: yes, I'm Ngozi, but I dont seem to recognise you.

MOAM: I'm Mrs Chido*. (said in a way that suggested I should automatically recognise the name) i bu Ngozi onye? ( Ngozi who? i.e. what's your surname?)
By this point I should have sussed that something wasnt quite right, why was she asking me what my surname was if she knew me? But I answered the question, nevertheless.

me: Ngozi Okafor*. Do you know my parents?

MOAM: (smiling) ok. You're from Anambra state, right? what part?

me: Nnewi.

MOAM: you live locally?

me: yes, I live in Colindale (me and my verbal diarrhoea!!!)

At this point the phone in my office rings. I excuse myself and answer it. Its Carol, one of my colleagues, ringing from another department.

Carol: Jane* (referring to me by my english name) I've just had someone over here a few minutes ago asking for you, but she didnt seem to know exactly who she was looking for. First she asked if there was someone called Julie, then she asked for Janice. I said there was no one by that name working here, then she gave a description that matched you. So I asked her if the person she was after was known by another name; she didnt seem to know, but she said she was looking for a nigerian girl. Then another colleague asked, 'is her name also Ngozi?' and the lady was like, 'YES!' straightaway. 'she's the one I'm looking for!' So we directed her to your office, but I kept thinking it was a bit strange the way she acted, that's why I'm calling you.

me: thanks Carol. (put down the phone and addressed MOAM). Sorry, where did you say you know me from again?

MOAM: erm, you know my daughter Stella*? she went to FGGC Owerri.

me: no. I dont know anyone by that name and I didnt go to FGGC Owerri

MOAM: She has twins and she is going to throw a party for their 1st birthday which is coming up. She just moved to Colindale too , but she doesnt know a lot of people there, so she's looking to make some friends. If you like you can come over for the party, meet her , get to know her.

Obviously by this time my suspicion sensors had been fully activated. Who was she, what did she want from me and why was she asking all these questions? It was so obvious she did not know me either, so what was she playing at? I decided to make a quick getaway.

me: I'm sorry, but I dont know your daughter. I really have to go, I'm due at a meeting now. ( I start walking along the corridor and she follows suit. )
MOAM: do you know Chioma*? she also went to FGGC Owerri, she lives in Finchley.

I stopped. I do know a girl by that name, who lives in Finchley ,who also went to that school. Enquiring some more it turns out that her daughter is very good friend's with Chioma's sister. Ok, I calm down a bit, but not completely as she then proceeds to ask for my telephone number and address. I'm thinking ,'lady I've already let on too much information about myself ; just bcos your daughter happens to know my friend, it doesnt change the fact that I still dont know you from Adam.' Trying not to appear rude, I politely declined,so she gave me her telephone number and her daughter' s number and address instead!!
AH! See my trouble oh! This woman just does not give up! I decided to do some investigating of my own later; I was going to get to the bottom of this. The result of the said investigation will be reported in my next post.
To be continued......

*The names mentioned in this post have been changed to protect the identities of the parties involved.